Steeplechasers Lead GNAC On Day 2 Of Outdoor Nationals
The GNAC record-holder in the women's steeplechase, Julia Howley finished third with a time of 10:27.05. Photo courtesy of Simon Fraser athletics.
The GNAC record-holder in the women's steeplechase, Julia Howley finished third with a time of 10:27.05. Photo courtesy of Simon Fraser athletics.

Friday, May 24, 2019

KINGSVILLE, Texas – Led by a trio of All-American performances in the steeplechase, the GNAC came away with six more All-American trophies on day two of the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Texas A&M-Kingsville’s Javelina Stadium.

Simon Fraser senior Julia Howley, who set the GNAC record in the women’s steeplechase earlier this season, earned All-American honors with a third-place finish in a time of 10:27.05.

In the men’s steeplechase, sophomore Wesley Kirui earned his first All-American trophy as an Alaska Anchorage athlete and his second as a collegiate athlete, placing third with a time of 8:56.33. In his first year in Anchorage, Kirui was a Division I All-American in the steeplechase for Hampton last year. Senior teammate Edwin Kangogo was right behind, placing fourth in 8:57.86.

Seattle Pacific junior Scout Cai scored a personal-best of 5,054 points to finish seventh in the pentathlon, earning the conference’s first All-American of the day. After finishing the first day in ninth place, Cai used a pair of top-five finishes to move into All-American position. She placed second in the javelin with a throw of 126 feet, 8 inches and closed the competition by placing fifth in the 800 meters in 2:23.64.

Central Washington senior HarLee Ortega placed 11th with a score of 4,904 points after placing fourth in the javelin (118-10) and sixth in the 800 meters (2:24.30). Concordia senior Chelsea Bone completed the competition despite no-heighting in the high jump on Thursday, placing 14th with 3,098 points.

Wildcats’ sophomore Braydon Maier earned an All-American trophy in the decathlon, moving up six places on the second day to place seventh with a score of 6,854 points. Maier finished in the top-10 in all five second-day events, topped by a fourth-place finish in the 110-meter hurdles (15.14) and sixth in the pole vault (14-5.25). Concordia senior Giovanni Brown was 11th with a score of 6,684 points. In typical fashion, Brown won the final event of the competition, the 1,500 meters, in 4:29.64.

Northwest Nazarene senior Jake Knight earned All-American honors in the first of his two events of the meet. He took fifth in the men’s discus with a mark of 181 feet, 11 inches. Concordia senior Sam Nichols placed 10th with a mark of 171 feet, 2 inches.

The GNAC advanced three of five competitors in the women’s 800 meters to Saturday’s final. Alaska Anchorage senior Danielle McCormick led the way with a time of 2:09.40, fifth-fastest of the preliminary heats. Simon Fraser senior Alana Mussatto was sixth in the preliminaries in 2:12.25 while Clan senior Sophie Dodd was seventh-fastest at 2:08.25 to qualify.

Simon Fraser senior Paige Nock was 10th in a time of 2:11.82 while Western Oregon senior Olivia Woods was 12th in 2:14.36.

Central Washington senior Mariyah Vongsaveng qualified for the finals in the women’s 100-meter hurdles, running the sixth-fastest time of the preliminaries in 13.97 seconds. The Alaska Anchorage women’s 4x400-meter relay team earned the final time qualifier in that event, advancing to the final with a time of 3:45.09.

Western Washington senior Maddie Taylor rounded out the day’s action, tying for 13th in the women’s high jump with a clearance 5 feet, 4.5 inches.

Saturday competition involving GNAC athletes begins at 11:30 am (Central) with the women’s javelin followed by the men’s javelin at 2:25 p.m. Conference athletes will also compete in the women’s pole vault, women’s pole vault, women’s triple, women’s shot put, men’s high jump, the women’s 1,500 meters, women’s 100-meter hurdles, women’s 800 meters, women’s 5,000 meters and the women’s 4x400-meter relay.